- July 19, 2018
When Arlen Kong's family purchased Bob's Cases and Kegs, renaming it 5 Points Cases and Kegs, the new name wasn’t the only major change they made. What was once a predictable “big box” store, offering customers full cases, has been transformed into a store that boasts many more style and package options. Maintaining a wide variety of full cases, for those loyal customers who know exactly what they want, Arlen gave the other half of 5 Points a complete overhaul, adding a new walk-in cooler, extensive shelving and hundreds of single serve craft options. The result? A versatile beer store that in many ways represents both the changing dynamics of the beer industry and beer consumers alike.
Heady Times (HT): What has the transition from Bob’s Cases and Kegs to 5 Points been like?
Arlen Kong (AK): We’ve only been owners for seven months, so this transition happened extremely fast. The previous owner had it set up as a run-of-the-mill beer store. Cases and kegs, literally. That was sorta it. It was a great beer store in its own right, we just added some new twists. We turned it around and added more crafts and six-packs, beer to-go and things like that, while keeping the essence of customer service that Bob’s was famous for.
HT: What was the very first thing you decided to change?
AK: We added a whole new POS (point of sale) software system. It was analog when we first moved in. Entering the digital age with our new POS system allows us to keep better track of inventory and helps keep the beer fresh. After that, we ripped out all the old shelving, added a new walk-in cooler and changed the layout of the store. We also took a big risk with the large variety of beer we now sell.
HT: How do you educate your customers who might not be crafty just yet?
AK: We keep our consumers up-to-speed with regular tastings. We try to hold as many as possible, especially with today’s trending styles such as mead and spiked seltzers. Everyone is unique, so individual care is essential. We try to give our customers proper guidance and use promotional tools, so they get the most for their money, while still enjoying different slices of life!
HT: Do you take advantage of your own single serve selection?
AK: It’s the best part of the job! It’s fun for me because a lot of the beer I bring into the store is the stuff that I personally like, or a new beer that looks cool or something that’s exciting to me. I like all the crazy stuff. You could call me a “hop head”, even though I’m not crazy about that term. I also really like stouts and sours. I like it all.
5 Points’ new shelving has dramatically improved their customers’ shopping experience.
408 Doylestown Pike, Montgomeryville • 215-855-9191